You would think that creating a character would be like designing the perfect person. You, the writer, have full control of everything from the looks, personality, and style of this new person to when you will allow them to speak and what you will allow them to say. Given the nature of control that you have over your characters, you would think that liking or hating them would come easily. As an author, I don’t necessarily think that is true.
There are many times when I’m developing a character with one personality in mind, and something happens—the character speaks to me and tells me I’m wrong, and they’re allowed to create themselves, so to speak. This happened with the creation of Alice in COME BACK TO ME. When the story began, Alice was set to be a stoic, conniving woman with no ability to bond with others. I expected her to remain that way throughout the book. She had other ideas.
What happens next in these situations always takes me by surprise. I end up bonding with the characters I thought I would not. They take over more of the story, weaseling their way into the hearts of the author (yeah, that’s me), and when the writing process is over, I find myself thinking about them and their pasts, what made them the way they were.
It would be interesting to create a whole book one each character’s backstory. Yeah, I get a little too bonded to my characters. They never seem to go to sleep!
As a reader, do you put characters away easily or do you bond with them?
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Article written for It's All About Writing